The Union County Freeholder Board proudly invites families and residents to the grand opening of the Wheeler Park Spray Park—the largest of its kind in the County system—in Linden on Saturday, May 25th.
Doors are open from 11 a.m-7 p.m., and admission is free to the state-of-the-art facility. The Freeholders will hold a ribbon cutting marking the opening of the Spray Park at 1 p.m. All residents are invited to attend. In the event of a postponement due to weather, the ribbon cutting will be held the next day, Sunday, May 26th, at 1 p.m.
Wheeler Park is located at Route 1 and 9 between South Wood Avenue and South Stiles Street. Parking for the spray park is off W. Stimpson Avenue. Hours for the spray park are: Monday-Friday: 12-6 p.m., Saturday, Sunday, holidays 11a.m.-7 p.m.
Freeholder Chair Bette Jane Kowalski stated:
“With the opening of the spray park, the Freeholder Board has completed yet another step in a process that is not only renovating our parks system but also providing more recreational opportunities for our residents,” Kowalski said. “The Wheeler Park Spray Park is an impressive facility that generations of our residents will enjoy.”
Freeholder Christopher Hudak, a resident of Linden who championed the project, said:
“We have built what will become a countywide attraction for our families to enjoy. This Freeholder Board has continued to make upgrades to Wheeler Park, transforming it into one of the County’s best recreational facilities. We are looking forward to marking a great day for Linden and the County of Union as a whole.”
The spray park, which is the largest of eight spray facilities the County maintains in its parks system, contains 33 above ground attractions, including water cannons, a full-size dragon, slides, fake palm trees, dump buckets, a psychedelic spray bus, and a multi-function pirate ship and surf shack.
The spray park encompasses 11,000 square feet of the total 49,000 square foot area, and also contains picnic tables, ample space for lounging, gazebos for shade, artificial turf areas, and plenty of free-play space.
A new 24,000 square foot building, which replaces the old Wheeler Pool building, contains lockers, bathrooms, changing space, vending machines and mechanical and electrical facilities.
An entrance and ticketing building near the parking lot will house nurse and lifeguard quarters. The Spray Park was designed by USA Architects and constructed by Billy Contracting and Restoration Inc. of Pine Brook, NJ.
As Freeholder Hudak noted, the spray park announcement is among the latest in a series of high-profile improvements at the park in recent years, including the opening of a new skate park, new softball and soccer turf fields with lights, and a new playground. The park was also enabled for Wi-Fi in 2014.
Wheeler Park was developed in 1925 by the Union County Park Commission and was designed by the Olmsted Brothers, the noted engineering firm that designed a series of historic landmark parks in urban areas. Their list of projects includes Central Park in New York City and ten others in the Union County parks system.
In the spirit of the National Memorial Day Program, the Cranford Memorial Day Committee will hold its annual Memorial Day Parade on Monday, May 27, 2019. Members of the Governing body of Garwood will participate in the parade and all residents are encouraged to attend.
The parade will assemble at 8:30 a.m. at the Cranford Community Center, 220 Walnut Avenue, Cranford, New Jersey. Marching will start at 9 a.m. The parade will finish with services at approximately 10 a.m. at Memorial Park on Springfield Avenue. In case of inclement weather, services only will be held at the Community Center.
The Westfield Area YMCA hosts Dr. Antonios Mammis, Functional Neurosurgeon at University Hospital Newark and Dr. Erin Feinstein, Movement Disorder Specialist at University Hospital Newark for a free lunchtime lecture 12:30-2:00PM on Wednesday, 5/29. Learn about the latest therapies for Parkinson’s Disease. Topics include medication management, diet/exercise, and surgical options. Refreshments will be served. Y members and the community are invited, please register by 5/24.
Jean White, Westfield Area YMCA Health & Wellness Director, will also be available to discuss the “Delay the Disease: Exercise to Fight Parkinson’s Symptoms” class offered at the Y. Research has shown that physical exercise has measurable benefits for those living with Parkinson’s. This unique program, led by Y trainers with specialized certification, incorporates strength, flexibility, balance, and cardiovascular exercises to help soothe tremors, improve posture, smooth steps and increase overall well-being.
The Y is the nation’s leading nonprofit committed to strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Financial assistance is available for those who qualify. Learn more about Westfield Area YMCA programs at www.westfieldynj.org.
The Westfield Area YMCA, in collaboration with the Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA and Plainfield YMCA will host the 21st Annual Achievers Banquet on Friday, June 7, from 7:00 pm – 11:00 pm at The Westwood, 438 North Avenue in Garwood. The evening will include a cocktail hour with live musical performances by students; dinner and dancing; an art auction and tricky tray. The tricky tray features over 20 items including offerings from Lord & Taylor, Plainfield Symphony, Kidoolo, Somerset Patriots and NY Broadway Tours. At the banquet, graduating high school seniors, Achievers alumni and Connell Company scholarship recipients will be recognized with certificates distributed by Assemblywoman Linda Carter.
This year’s event features speakers and artists:
Keynote Speaker, Tobias Truvillion, is best known as an actor on In Contempt and Empire. He is also a film producer, philanthropist, inner-city youth mentor, advocate, and arts instructor.
Banquet Guest Artist, John Stanisci, is a Marvel/DC Comic illustrator who will auction his work to benefit the Achievers program. John has been a professional illustrator for over 18 years working for all the major comic book publishers drawing characters such as Spider Man, Batman, Catwoman, Superman, and The Hulk.
Positive Peer Pressure Speaker, Dean A. Scott, is co-founder of Cocoa Mocha Kids, an online social media resource page that reviews products for children of color. Ten-year-old Dean and mom Tasha are also the creators of The Mia London “Perfectly Perfect Pajama” Collection, the first pajama collection for children of color.
Proceeds of the 21st Annual Banquet will benefit the Achievers Program. To attend or support, please visit www.westfieldynj.org/programs/leadership-development/ or the Westfield Area YMCA Welcome Center at 220 Clark Street in Westfield. Ad Journal or vendor table submissions are due by May 31st. Individual or table tickets must be purchased by June 3rd.
The Westfield Area YMCA Achievers began 21 years ago as part of a national program focusing on college readiness, career development, leadership, life skills and mentoring for diverse high school students from Union County. The goal is to raise the academic standards of young people, expose students to diverse career options and inspire them to reach their goals. Achievers also participate in community service activities, celebrate their history, culture and traditions, receive college prep tutoring and essay assistance. This program is available at little or no cost to participants.
For inquiries about the banquet or how to otherwise support these leaders of tomorrow, please contact Janice A. Carthens at 908-301-YMCA (9622) x227,[email protected] or Nadya Lawrence at 908-301-YMCA (9622) x280,[email protected].
Mark your calendars for June 9. We’re designating it “Celebrate Cranford,” in honor of Cranford’s recent ranking as the top downtown in NJ! The event will have a Kid Zone, Fit Fest, Music, and Sloppy Joe Eating Contest! The event is sponsored by Downtown Cranford, Cranford Community Connection, Cranford Jaycees, Cranford Area Chamber of Commerce, Hanson Park Conservancy, and Cranford Municipal Alliance. The day promises to be a true celebration of everything we love about Cranford.